How do you sell more travel experiences?
Post-pandemic, that is the question on a lot of tour operators’ minds. For starters, you need to have a thorough understanding of your customers/target market, you need to identify your niche to give your business a competitive edge; promote your business through the right channels, price your travel experiences competitively, and convince travelers to book your tours.
That is not to mention the fact that you need to offer a high-quality travel experience so that you can get outstanding reviews, returning customers, and recommendations and shares.
In this guide, we’ll break down three of the most important pillars travel businesses and tour operators can do right now to sell more travel experiences.
3 Ways You Can Sell More Travel Experiences
Let’s take a deeper look at the specific avenues you can take to increase your tour bookings.
1. Develop Stronger Awareness For Your Brand
Simply put, the easier it is to discover and recognize your brand and learn about what you offer, the more tour packages you will sell.
However, making your travel brand stand out in today’s highly competitive landscape isn’t as easy as it may sound. Developing a strong online and offline presence can greatly assist you in achieving this.
Here are some of the different channels you can use.
Ensure Your Website Is First Class
Maintaining a highly engaging website is your most important online asset. This tool needs to be fully functioning so that when you drive traffic to your site, it is a catalyst for clients to book a tour.
Your website should display all of the information about what your travel business offers, where you operate, what your pricing looks like, and so on.
Your landing page should be optimized to minimize the chance of prospective customers bouncing from a page. You should also conduct thorough research into the specific keywords that are pertinent to your brand and maximize your content accordingly to drive more traffic to your site.
To maximize brand awareness and attract as much traffic as possible, you should follow these SEO best practices. And let’s not forget the great power of Google. There are various methods you can use to attract potential customers to your website.
Optimize Your Social Media Platforms
Around 52% of travelers decide to visit a certain destination based on images or videos they’ve seen on social media.
If you want to sell tour packages online, then you cannot underestimate the importance of social media platforms and all the nifty tricks that come with them (hashtags, live streaming with a special guest, a quirky TikTok video, etc.).
A strong social media presence lets you attract an audience and entice them with your offerings. Because social media is a visual place, it’s a great way to show off what your tours have to offer.
There is a range of data analytics at your disposal, don’t shy away from utilizing these to get a thorough understanding of how your audience interacts with your various platforms so that you can improve their experience.
Partake In Travel Shows
Spreading brand awareness doesn’t all have to be done online. Travel shows are an effective way for you to connect with an array of potential clients and partners.
Strategically networking in the travel industry can make a big difference to tour sales.
Utilize Other Travel Marketing Strategies
A well-rounded travel marketing plan can help you achieve many things – a major one being increased brand awareness.
There are many different strategies that you can take to accomplish this, including using channels like email marketing, running giveaways and promotions, working with influencers, publishing video and blog content, hosting webinars, and more.
2. Enhance The Customer Journey
Another angle to take to increase sales is to analyze the customer journey. This involves understanding how your customers discover your tour company, how they interact with your brand, and whether they eventually book a tour.
To understand this 360 view, you will need to map out your marketing funnel. The different stages of the marketing funnel include three main categories:
This is the first point when a need is identified. The customer searches for a product or service and discovers your brand.
The customer has interacted with your brand, understands what is on offer, and deliberates or considers the various options.
The decision stage is when the customer decides to take action (e.g. book a tour).
It’s vital to be aware of the actions of the client at each stage so that you can accommodate them and steer them accordingly. Identifying customer behaviors and actions will also help you with future prospective clients.
You can ask the following questions to ensure that all your bases are covered:
- When searching for a product or service, is your tour company easily searchable?
- Are your products/services competitively priced in the industry/market?
- Does your online space encourage the client to hit “book a tour”?
- Does your platform lack “call to action” buttons?
You need to understand what the customer is interested in seeing and what their pain points are. This will help you create more relevant marketing content that moves them down the funnel to sell travel experiences.
For example, you could publish videos or social media content at the awareness stage, detailing your destinations or the kind of activities you offer. Then, during the consideration stage, you could target customers with testimonials from other clients, special offers, and anything else that builds trust and excitement and entices them.
Finally, you can target these “warmed up” customers with your online booking page. This should be optimized for conversions by displaying attractive features like your money-back guarantee, or 5-star reviews from previous customers.
A vital part of enhancing the customer journey is to conduct a user experience audit. Understand the functionality of your website or app, and what information is available through your different channels. How easy is it to book a tour with you? What information is your customer experience missing?
Another strategy to help you sell travel experiences is to refine your sales pitch training. When you come into contact with customers at the decision stage of their journey, you need to make sure to address and adequately cover the topics that they want to know.
3. Streamline Your Booking And Payment Solutions
Finally, one of the most essential elements for any business to sell more tours is an efficient booking system. An exemplary booking and payment solution can enhance your customer experience, while also making it a lot easier to manage your travel business.
The most crucial element of a booking system is the ease of use for the customer. To sell travel experiences, the booking process should be seamless, straightforward, and convenient.
Second, your booking and payment system should save you, as the tour operator, a lot of time and effort by reducing administration time. Instead of taking bookings through the back and forth email threads or phone calls, you can simply accept online bookings and manage your calendar automatically. This also makes it a lot easier to accept and manage payments.
This is especially important for small tour operator businesses that have fewer hands to help manage bookings. The right solution will take care of all your booking and payment needs, giving you more time to focus on growing and managing your business.
It’s important that you incorporate this step into the other two strategies listed above. Your booking system should work in line with your marketing strategies and customer journey. Customers should be able to discover your tours, learn about them, and book them through a seamless experience.
Book a demo to see how WeTravel can simplify your booking process to help you scale your business. If you want to sell tours online, a platform like this is essential.
Selling more travel experiences comes down to three important factors, namely, increasing brand awareness, enhancing the customer experience/journey, and using a highly efficient booking/payment platform.
To run a successful business, it’s crucial to fully understand how these three areas work and use the right tools and strategies to optimize them.
By continuously finding ways to improve your systems and processes, and making the customer journey as pleasant and easy as possible, these are sure-fire ways to attract and retain clients and increase revenue.